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Abse, D.W. (1995). The Psyche and the Social World: Developments in Group-Analytic Theory. : Edited by Dennis Brown and Louis Zinkin. London/New York: Routledge. 1994. Pp. 280 + xii.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 76:201-205.

(1995). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 76:201-205

The Psyche and the Social World: Developments in Group-Analytic Theory. : Edited by Dennis Brown and Louis Zinkin. London/New York: Routledge. 1994. Pp. 280 + xii.

Review by:
D. Wilfred Abse

Though this book is a group production embodying the results of considerable group discussion and much consensus, based on a sharing of S. H. Foulkes's pioneering psychoanalytic orientation to group therapy, the authors also separately develop different emphases and some points of divergence from one another. Moreover, in attempting to extend the theory of therapeutic group analysis by means of incorporating variant systems approaches and some shaky anthropological and philosophical viewpoints, some of these authors occasionally overwhelm pertinent consideration of the application to group therapy of clinically-anchored basic concepts of Freud's psychoanalysis, as, for example, those summarised so well in Otto Fenichel's The Psychoanalytic Theory of Neurosis (1945).

There is an interesting introductory chapter by the editors, Dennis Brown & Louis Zinkin, linking their work with Foulkes's legacy, and they also provide a final chapter, which constitutes a valiant attempt to bring together some of the discordances. Their overview, explicitly not intended as a critical review, certainly does not pre-empt one.

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